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THE RULES OF CONSTRUCTION OF AN AZTEC DEITY: CHALCHIUHTLICUE, THE GODDESS OF WATER

THE RULES OF CONSTRUCTION OF AN AZTEC DEITY: CHALCHIUHTLICUE, THE GODDESS OF WATER AbstractThis article seeks to contribute to the development of a method for analyzing the attributes of the gods of central Mexico in the manuscripts and the statuary from the time of the Spanish conquest. I focus on the Goddess of Water, Chalchiuhtlicue, “Jade Her Skirt.” The method consists of isolating the component designs of her array and grouping them in semantic groups. I begin by examining these designs and show that all of them were used in the notation of toponyms. These findings call into question the traditional separation between glyphs and icons. I next study the semantic groups and show that they consist of a series of culturally selected manifestations of water. Hence, it follows that the rules of composition of the goddess were grounded on a process of “definition by extension.” Thus, most of the semantic groups referred to different secondary names of the goddess, allowing us to think that they represented theonyms of a particular type. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Ancient Mesoamerica Cambridge University Press

THE RULES OF CONSTRUCTION OF AN AZTEC DEITY: CHALCHIUHTLICUE, THE GODDESS OF WATER

Ancient Mesoamerica , Volume 31 (1): 22 – Jan 1, 2020

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References (94)

Publisher
Cambridge University Press
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press, 2018
ISSN
1469-1787
eISSN
0956-5361
DOI
10.1017/S0956536118000056
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

AbstractThis article seeks to contribute to the development of a method for analyzing the attributes of the gods of central Mexico in the manuscripts and the statuary from the time of the Spanish conquest. I focus on the Goddess of Water, Chalchiuhtlicue, “Jade Her Skirt.” The method consists of isolating the component designs of her array and grouping them in semantic groups. I begin by examining these designs and show that all of them were used in the notation of toponyms. These findings call into question the traditional separation between glyphs and icons. I next study the semantic groups and show that they consist of a series of culturally selected manifestations of water. Hence, it follows that the rules of composition of the goddess were grounded on a process of “definition by extension.” Thus, most of the semantic groups referred to different secondary names of the goddess, allowing us to think that they represented theonyms of a particular type.

Journal

Ancient MesoamericaCambridge University Press

Published: Jan 1, 2020

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